WASHINGTON, MO— Billy Eugene Shuffler, born December 27, 1929 in Forbes, NC, died November 28, 2020 in Washington, MO at the age of 90.
The son of Carrick Nelson Shuffler and Sallie Garland Shuffler, he was one of 5 children including Charles L. (“CL”) Shuffler, James (“Buster”) Shuffler, Hugh Shuffler and Jolene Shuffler-Small who were born and raised at the foot of the Roan Mountain in Buladean, NC. In addition to his brothers and sister, others who preceded him in death included his grandson (Michael) in 1993, his beloved wife of 48 years (Enid) in 2000 and his son (William) in 2006. He is survived by 2 children: Gene Shuffler (April) of Brookfield, MO & Elinda Eakins (Kerry) of Atlanta, GA: 5 grandchildren (Chrissy, Derek, Joe, Trenton & Rissa) and 7 great grandchildren (Macey, Katie, Madilyn, Will, Jack, Levi, and Molly).
His adventurous life included enlisting in the Army at the age of 18 and serving in Japan in 1947 with the U.S. Army Occupation Force as a Carpenter Foreman. When he came back to the States at age 20, he fell in love with and married Dorothy Enid Upton of Marion, NC and moved to Baltimore, MD to work in the Martin Marietta aircraft factory. He was soon promoted to work at Cape Canaveral with the original 7 astronauts in the new Project Mercury/NASA manned space program. When the space program slowed down after an accident involving an Apollo capsule that resulted in the deaths of 3 astronauts, including his friend, Gus Grissom, he transitioned to supervising the construction of underground anti-ballistic missile (ABM) silos all over the country. During his work with NASA, the astronaut program and the ABM missile silo construction he was introduced to 4 sitting Presidents. In 1972, President Nixon signed the SALT Agreement with the Soviet Union and all construction of such silos stopped. He then transitioned to work for major construction companies such as Peter Kiewit & Sons and Fluor and worked all over the United States, as well as in Saudi Arabia, Iran, and New Zealand building power stations, pump stations and working on oil pipelines. He worked on the Alaska Pipeline where he was a Superintendent of 3 pump stations along the line and received extraordinary recognition for safety achievements and production at each station. He retired to Missouri briefly at the age of 65 but was soon back to work as Construction Superintendent for the buildout of numerous medical clinics/offices in the Atlanta, Georgia area. At age 83, he fully retired and moved to Washington, MO where he resided until his death.
Funeral Services will be held at Ford & Sons Funeral Home located at 1001 North Mount Auburn, Cape Girardeau, MO 63701. Visitation is scheduled for Wednesday, December 16 from 5-8 pm and the funeral service is scheduled for Thursday morning at 10:00 a.m. He is to be placed beside his wife (Enid) and his grandson (Michael) in Cape Girardeau, Missouri in the Cape County Memorial Park.